Thursday, August 07, 2008

Seeing the Forest from the Trees

click to enlarge

Some people have been raising a fuss about “the removal of two fifths of the trees in Symphony Woods in order to accommodate buildings.” It's pretty easy to get folks all riled up with statements like that.

I don’t know where the two fifths calculation came from but since Liz Bobo mentioned it in her op-ed piece in the Sun last month it seems to have become gospel.

This exhibit from General Growths draft master plan for Town Center puts the tree removal issue into perspective. When you look at it this way the impact of the new buildings and roads on the park just doesn’t seem that significant.

If the “two fifths” cry is gaining traction in the court of public opinion it is partially GGP’s fault. The graphic depiction shown here is found towards the end of the “Vision in Focus: Sustainability / Environment” presentation that can be downloaded from their town center website. The problem is that this presentation downloads very slowly, even with a good high speed connection. Many people will give up viewing this critical presentation long before they get to this particular exhibit. It’s much easier to hang on to a politician’s sound bite than to wade through a slow loading power point presentation for the real story.

I think someone in tech support at GGP should take a look at this.


Anonymous said...

Well, is it "just not that significant" or is it 2 fifths?

Do you disagree with the quantity 2 fifths, or do you disagree that 2 fifths is significant?

Tom said...

If the tree experts say 2/5 of the trees are dead or dying what are you trying to save? A dead forest? I am confused by this 2/5 of the trees are going to be lost argument. Aren't they already lost or soon to be lost?

wordbones said...

Anon 7:11 AM,

My problem with the 2 fifths statement is that I am not sure what is being used as a baseline. Are they counting the trees that are already dead or dying?

Are they only counting the trees on CA land?

Are they including the trees on Merriweather land?

My point is that exhibit is helpful to the discussion because it shows exactly what trees would be removed. The only problem is that this particular power point presentation downloads so slowly that most people wil give up before they get to this exhibit. Somebody needs to put this on a blog or something.

Oh wait, I think I just did that!


C20 said...

Hi WB,

Thought your readers might like to see what a restored and revitalized Symphony Woods might look like. Check out our short video clip at: